Thursday, April 30, 2015

Project 365; 101-120 (Almost a third of a year through)

101/365 - Some critter cuddles

102/365 - Architectural baking

103/365 - Don't cry over spilled hot pepper

104/365 - My life.

105/365 - Dishes unwashed

106/365 - Alex and I emptied out my piggy bank to
look at the many now-defunct coins in there. Lots from Belgium
and Holland. Some from the UK and Germany. My favourite
is still the beautiful silver one on the left centerish,
the 10-frank coin. So shiny. :)

107/365 - Grimm and popcorn

108/365 - Flying pie piled high.

109/365 - Spine

110/365 - Mohair

111/365 - Sleepy boo. I've been cheating a bit by using collage
apps to submit more than one pic per day. Sue me.

112/365 - A hat in the making

113/365 - Alex and Angus, waiting for
dad at the airport.

114/365 - Acorns & Thquos

115/365 - Big sky in Boring (yes, there is a Boring Oregon).

116/365 - Some trimmage

117/365 - Some unexpected lovely weather means more sky shots.
Gradations of blue.

118/365 - Photographic evidence that the front room was tidy. I needed it
because it wasn't long before it was a demolition zone again.

119/365 -  Alex got his first fish tank and we got fishies for it yesterday.
He is endlessly fascinated. Today, he tried to feed them a cracker.
He got two tetras and a guppy so far.

120/365 - Replanting my string-of-pearls
succulents. I got them in 2008. They needed
room, so I split them into two seashells. :)

Sunday, April 26, 2015

The finished test capote bonnet

Thoughts? I think it looks somewhat like the original. A few tweaks of the design and it'll be ready to put up as a pattern. The angled arm on the brim is broader on the original. And the back has a bigger area to tuck in the updo. But it is a start! Onto another test with some modifications. I will be bundling this pattern in with another bonnet pattern--and selling them on my blog page along with my other patterns.

I'm auctioning off the test-bonnet. It's not the best craftsmanship, it's a bit sloppy, so I'm making a starting bid of $25. You can bid HERE.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

A hat, a hat, what'd'ya think about that? Capote bonnet time

So my funk seems to be lifting a bit. I'm back on Pristiq, since our new health insurance actually covers it. I'm still trying to figure out if Providence covered anything at all, except the most basic stuff, because our time with Providence proved to be the most heavily billed time with an insurance provider, ever, and it nearly killed us financially.  This medical system is a joke. A massive joke.

I digress... enough ranting about the American medical system of shite. Onto better things. Like hats. Everybody likes hats. Right?  Well you should.

I've been a big fan of the capote bonnet. I have for a while, but I've always been a bit flummoxed as to how one goes about making them.  I came close enough to the infamous Kate Winslet sea-grass bonnet with my paper lace one that I made last summer. But this particular spoon bonnet pictured below has been something I've coveted for some time:

It's really unique. I love the shape. So I endeavored to create a pattern to make one yesterday, in spite of the constant, and annoying interference of my little son.  I think I've come close. I will add some trim to this one, and maybe make one more test bonnet using the pattern, so I can lock down the best way to cover it.  The hat frame itself is easy. It's the covering of it that's the bitch.

The pattern was easy enough to come up with.  It's always useful to have a foam head, because it really helps to shape things. But foam heads are also small--so I have to keep that in mind when I'm patterning hats. I started with two pieces of regular paper (where I sustained my project injury in the form of a paper cut -- usually when hatting, I pierce at least one finger with pins so this is an unwelcome change).

I sketched out teh general shape of the brim piece, and then measured out the back neck-piece. I transfered this to poster-board, taking care to make it a bit neater. Then, with a little courage, I cut the pieces from buckram. It does not take too much buckram to make this hat.

My general shape in poster-board. It will be refined and smoothened up later.
This is just experiment time. The top is the brim, the little bit is the
back neck piece. The lines are the general placement of the millinery
wire that will connect them.

The necessary supplies. 

I whipstiched the wire to the brim. The trick with millinery wire is to just
apply it without trying to shape it. I did bend it around the corners, but
that is all. Also, I started on a long edge and then overlapped to maintain

I swiveled it on pins to see if the shape and size were good.

Even as an experimentation piece, I wanted a smooth edge. Some bias tape
was added to the edges that mattered. I glued it on. Cheater!

As you see, the back neck-piece has been added and pinned into place as well.

I measured out four wires to connect the two pieces and create the necessary
support for the fabric and shape. In order to attach it to the pieces of buckram
I turned the tips of each wire by 90º so it won't pull off.

I added the wires to the brim. I did not bend them, but I did use the arc of the wire
to my advantage.

I also made sure that the wire was also firmly sewn into place on the edge so
it wouldn't slide back and forth.
 It's here where I began to think about the covering.  I found some ugly silk from a bag of silk remnants I got years ago. And I was going ot make the lining different and then decided against it, I figured I would just use the ugly silk up.  With trim and such, it might not be so frumpy looking.

I measured my wires, and then used the brim to cut a two pieces of fabric together. I tapered the fabric from the width of the brim to the neck piece, and then slit where the little brim angles were so it could pocket right into the fabric once I sewed it up.

The pencil is the stitching. Once stitched, I
turned it inside out. I curled the brim
and shoved it into the narrow end
and then put the brim angles into
the pockets.

Now the wires are sticking out of the bottom of the covering.

I angled the wires at the bottom and began to affix them to the neck piece.

And done. I then pinned the fabric down in place and whip-stitched the bottom
closed. I tacked the fabric down along the top of the neck piece.

And I did the same for the inner edge of the brim. The trim will cover anything
No, this is not a picture of two turtles getting it on. It's just showing how you
take the neck piece and affix it to the underside of the brim angle. 

 This is what I have so far.

Because it's an experiment, I didn't use mulling. It would smoothen the whole
thing more if I had.

I think with trim it will look pretty good and close to the real thing.
We shall see! I just need to figure out the best way to cover this, and we're good
to go for a pattern. I might combine it with another pattern and add it to my
downloadables.  I'll post a final pic when it's done.

The little photobomber chewing a piece of steel boning. Kept me on my toes.

That's it for now. I'll post more laterz yo. :)

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Project 365 - Days 81-100

I'm home every day with my child. He is pretty much my entire life. And these days, he is the only thing keeping me from losing myself all together to this anxiety and depression issue I've been inflicted with lately.  It's really hard. I think this both controls it and contributes to it. My sense of self sometimes gets shaken, and my ability to have a creative outlet; such as writing or drawing or whatever else, is inhibited by having an active two and a half year old boy.

Part of me thinks I need to work again, that I need to get out of the house, and have structure, but nowadays, the mere idea of leaving the house can have me suffering from what I call 'flashes' of completely unjustified terror. Spurts of adrenaline that make my chest compress and my brain sort of short-circuit. I have to stop and breathe, breathe, breathe.  Is this a function that will disappear with a job, or will I be impeded by it? Deprived entirely of normality? Many of my regular readers know what an unapologetic control freak I am. Now imagine my brain doing something like this however it wants, and my having absolutely no control of it.  It's infuriating and frankly, miserable.  I wouldn't wish this on anyone. Even a libertarian ::snicker::

81/365 - My little man's foot. Small and cute.

82/365 - Ziggy Zags
83/365 - Cuddles

84/365 - Lots of my kid in this grouping.
Lashes behind lace.

85/365 - Oregon's main source of nutrition.
Coffee. Evidence of Oregon's
addiction; the empty sacks.


87/365 - Tokens from my baby


89/365 - Hubby brought home some treats


91/365 - Auntie Nee made a brief visit to the PNW. She got in some time
with her nephew, who adores her, and her mom.

92/365 - Blurry but sweet. Some kitty cuddles.

93/365 - Hearts are open

94/365 - Pre-Easter cuteness

95/365 - Morning egg hunt at home

96/365 - The boy looks good in my specs.

97/365 - Realized the other day, that except for a couple of days during pregnancy
because of swollen feet, I have worn these toe rings continuously since 1998 or 1999.
I pretty much forget they are even there.

98/365 - the saute pan

99/365 - Simon says pet me

100/365 - cozy quilt
So yeah. My pictures are Alex-intensive lately. But that's what this project is all about. Capture your life and the things that catch your eye.  Next installment will bring us close to a third of the way through the project. Number 101 is awfully cute! I won't be so debbie downer next time, I promise. Just having some medication adjustments that are making things challenging for me. I also have a project in mind that I may begin if I can find someone to help me kick off the hardest part. Laterz from the HC. 


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